Hi everyone! My name is Chloe. You might know me from the story about how my elderly neighbor, who recently tried to kill me, was all over the news. But if not – Hi! It’s nice to meet you all. I’d also like to introduce you to my dog Theo. He’s a longhaired Chihuahua who fits in my handbag, but honestly, he thinks he’s The Rock himself, and it’s Theo’s enthusiasm for life that I want to tell you about.
You see, I work as a parcel courier, and more often than not, Theo joins me on my daily run, delivering packages to the good residents of Westport, Australia. Some days it feels like Groundhog Day. I go to work, load my van and deliver the parcels, only to re-enter the shed the following day to find them all back there. Today was one of those days. As I approached the shed and saw the mountains of packages, I wondered if anyone had spotted me, and if I could make a quick retreat, hide in my car and call in sick. But then I thought about all the bills I had to pay, so I took a deep breath and tackled my pile.
Theo had adapted quite well to being my sidekick at work. In fact, a few of the other contractors loved him so much they brought him treats almost every day. Watching him happily chew the chicken stick my boss Gary had given him, reminded me I needed to take him for an extra walk this afternoon. If I didn’t, he would soon be obese.
Once everything was sorted and my van was loaded, I popped Theo in the front seat and set about my day. I’d long ago given up on trying to get him to sit in his special doggie car seat. He much preferred to wander around the back of the van, check out all the parcels, and then curl up on the floor behind the driver’s seat. That’s where he went today. Well, at least that’s where I thought he went.
I pulled the van to a stop at my first delivery and looked at the house. It was a single story, pale brick house with lots of cheerful flowers in pots around the front door. I think the flowers were there to counteract the demeanor of the man who lived here. He was anything but cheerful. I hated stopping here, and I only did so as a favor to the sweet old man who lived next door.
The sweetie pie – Mister Jeffries – only had one leg, and as he only wore his prosthetic leg for special occasions, he struggled to get to his door, so I had instructions to leave all his parcels with his grumpy neighbor Mister Willett. Today I had a special delivery on board – his new leg.
I looked towards the house and could see Mister Willett walking around his yard, thankfully wearing pants (I’d had the unfortunate pleasure of seeing him without his pants on more than one occasion, but after I told him I would no longer stop, he had attempted to cover up a bit more). Mister Willett stopped what he was doing and shuffled towards me. I opened the van door and slid off the seat, slamming the door shut as I walked around to the back of the vehicle.
“Good morning, Mister Willett!”
“Humph. Is it?” he replied.
“Of course it is. The sun is shining, the birds are singing, and judging by the clouds on the horizon, we might get some rain tonight to water your flowers.” I gave him my brightest smile in the hope it may cheer him up a bit.
“They’re plastic,” he snarled.
“Oh,” I said, taken aback. I guess I’d never looked that closely as I was always in a hurry to get away.
“What do you want?” I’d heard a while ago he’d got himself a lady friend. Lord knows how.
“I have a delivery for Mister Jeffries,” I answered, opening the back door to the van. Mister Willett shuffled up next to me.
“Well hurry up then. I’m aging here.”
Believe me, I was hurrying! I moved several of the larger boxes aside and found what I was looking for. Now, remember how I told you I thought Theo was tucked up nicely behind my seat? Well, today he had other plans. In fact, he must have been feeling ambitious. You see, instead of finding Mister Jeffries leg all neatly wrapped in brown paper, what I found was it half unwrapped with Theo chewing nicely on the toes.
My blood ran cold as Mister Willett stepped over and looked into the van.
“Hmm. . .that’s a pretty big bone for a little dog.”
I nearly fainted.
You can read more about Chloe and Theo in Killer Unleashed, a humorous romantic mystery published by Gemma Halliday Publishing.
GIVEAWAY: Leave a comment by 12 a.m. eastern on July 17 for the chance to win a paperback copy of Killer Unleashed. The giveaway is open to everyone. Winner will be notified within 48 hours after giveaway closes and you will have three days to respond after being contacted or another winner will be selected.
Meet the author
I was born in Manchester, England, but after moving backwards and forwards across the world 13 times in 14 years I decided that at the age of 18 that Australia was to be my home. I now live on the beautiful Sunshine Coast in Queensland, Australia where every day is a good one. I’m the lucky mother of two grown up children, and, along with my ever-patient husband, I’m the proud but sometimes flustered owner of four dogs, a cat, and a canary. I have always had a love of reading, and even though my background is in accounting, I’ve now discovered my love of writing. My main wish is to write books you can sit back, relax with, and escape from your everyday life. . .and ones that you walk away from with a smile! When I’m not writing you will usually find me at the beach with a coffee in hand, pursuing my favorite pastime—people watch. Visit her website here.